Monday, April 16, 2007

But we've got a world cup to win!

Sivivatu's lawyer, Philip Morgan, QC, said that a criminal record would make it harder for him to get visas to play overseas. Sivivatu was a church-goer and a non-drinker, who had never been in trouble and simply "lost it" during an argument.
To which I would say, so?

But the judge took a slightly different view. It is a small step forward that, unlike other All Blacks who hit their partners, Sitiveni Sivivatu didn't get permanent name suppression. But I don't see why the legal system should care whether he'll be able to play rugby overseas.

I'm not particularly fond of any part of the legal system, and if everyone got discharged without conviction, not just the rich and famous, then I wouldn't object. But just because you're an All Black is no reason to have a lesser penalty for hitting your partner.

Then, of course, he's off playing rugby the next week (because we've got the Super 14 to win). Stuff interviewed some rugby goers with a range of opinions, including some real staunch women. But the 'keep politics out of sport' crowd is still alive and well:
Fan Craig Clapson, at the match with his son, said Sivivatu should be able to play. "I can't condone wife beating, but from what I've read, it was basically a domestic that got a little out of hand and they've reconciled."
I only wish I could make a snarky comment about rugby fans at this point. Unfortunately, personal experience tells me that 'just a domestic' is not a rare response.


  1. Anonymous3:42 am

    I'm surprised it even made it to the papers. The Herald have told me that even without legal name surpression it is their policy not to report charges or even convictions for wife beating. Is that the ultimate in political correctness or what?

  2. I don't see how that qualifies as political correctness anon... It strikes me as more like protecting the powerful from the consequences of their actions.

  3. I read somewhere that Sivivatu's mother offered an "explanation" that he hit his wife because of a culture clash. She said he came from a Fijian culture where the man was boss, whereas his wife was from a Tongan culture where women are more powerful. I don't know enough about either culture to comment, but it makes me puke to hear a woman justifying men's violence on account of those uppity women making him mad. What an arse. This whole situation makes me puke.

  4. Anonymous7:17 pm

    though I don't think that the sentence was unusual or lighter from that of any other male who has a first time offence of partner/woman bashing, it seemed fairly standard (speaking from experience) I guess though you would think that the Rugby Authorities (?) might have given a response, or their own 'punishment'. Just as well he wasn't a cop or he could have called it 'self-defense' and gotten off completely.

  5. Anonymous5:31 pm

    I can honestly say that I disagree with 99.9% of your posts, but in this one you are bang on. There is never and never will be a reason for a man to hit a woman. As a man I believe that any man who hits a woman is a worthless thug. I dont care if he was an All Black or the tooth fairy. And the "she retracted and did not want to press charges..." is BS . I am sure the non drinking christian rugby player was too meek to scare her into retracting.
    Yeah right!

  6. Anonymous6:59 pm

    What anon2 said - I don't really think he should have gotten off just so he could play overseas.

    It would have send a powerful message to those wanting to be an all-black to see this guy restricted to home games only (or better yet, kicked out completely).

    But then again, I never thought I'd see the day when Mia says all rapists should get off.

  7. Anonymous12:31 pm

    Do you think she should have been charged for throwing the furniture at him? That is also domestic violence ?

  8. Anonymous2:47 pm

    i wonder though if he lost his career as a rugby player, wouldn't the effects of this also be felt again by his wife (kids?, future kids)...most people on a first offense get away with-out conviction simply by saying they might want to travel, let alone that it is an essential part of their career. I disagree with the stance you are taking here. Mainly because i think that Pacific Island men who get to have a rewarding career that pays really well, are an asset to their families, who often struggle finanically, and that not allowing him to travel would have cost him his career and been too great a punishment. Not condoning his behaviour, just trying to see a bigger picture.

  9. Anonymous8:37 pm

    At One time I was living with a man when I was ill. He did not support me financially at all. I did not do all the housework. A group of rugby boys told him I should be given a good hiding for making him share the housework when I was ill.

    He didn't give me a hiding but had I been dependent on him for money to feed and clothe children it may have been a different story.
    Most guys start hitting their partners when they become pregnant. (dependant not likely to leave)

    This demonstrates to me that some groups of men condone violence against women who will not become their servants and follow orders. That it is sexism as other men learn it from each other that causes a great deal of violence against women.

  10. Jo I see your point, I think I should clarify that it really pisses me off the grounds on which lots of people get diversion. The fact that you need to travel for business, or that your a student and it might interfere with your chance for scholarships - that's just as bad.

    In fact I'm generally not into convictions or prison or the legal ssytem. I might post a bit more.